Churro Tiramisu

Change out ladyfingers with cake-sized spirals of crispy churros brushed with espresso and layered with mascarpone cream and cocoa.


  • For the churros:
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 cups vegetable oil
  • For the tiramisu:
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups mascarpone cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 2 cups espresso, chilled
  • 1/2 cup dark cocoa powder, sifted


  1. Make the churros: In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the water, salt, 2 tablespoons of sugar and canola oil. Bring the mixture to a boil then remove it from the heat. Stir in the flour and baking powder, mixing with a wooden spoon until it forms a ball. Stir in eggs to combine. Transfer dough into a piping bag fitted with a large star tip.
  2. On a sheet tray lined with a silicone mat, pipe a large 8 by 8 inch circle of churro. Repeat and place in the freezer for 20 minutes to firm up. Use any remaining churro dough to make toppings for the cake.
  3. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat until it reaches 375 degrees. Remove the chilled churros and fry on each side for 2 minutes, carefully avoiding any oil splatter. Place on a cooling rack and dust with remaining sugar.
  4. Assemble the tiramisu: In a large bowl, whip cream and vanilla until medium peaks form. Combine with mascarpone and gently fold in espresso powder. Set aside.
  5. Brush the churros with espresso and place them in a lined springform pan. Cover with mascarpone and cream mixture and sprinkle with cocoa powder. Repeat with a second layer of churros, cream and cocoa. Refrigerate tiramisu for up to 6 hours to chill and set. Remove from the refrigerator, top with mini churros and serve. Cake will keep up to 3 days refrigerated.